August 15, 2012

The HEP Family: Diner of Champions

Welcome back! This is the second article in a three part series about our renovated HEP cars, otherwise known as The Canadian: the train set that travels across the country from Toronto to Vancouver.

You can check out the first article, “Mind Your Manors” where we wrote about (and saw images of) the updated Manor cars.

Onto the Diner cars, where both the new menu* and the updated decor create a true dining experience with a view no restaurant can compete with!

We’ll begin with the distinctive new red and charcoal colour scheme, which provides a great backdrop for the meals you’ll be enjoying here. All the seats were treated to new foam as well as new leather upholstery. Old flooring was replaced with new carpet and the ceiling and wall coverings were also updated.  The result is both elegant and relaxing; there’s nothing like a warm and welcoming environment in which to savour a delicious meal.

Behind-the-scenes, many efficiency and safety improvements were also made:

  • the kitchen was modernized and improved and is now a more reliable and better functioning meal preparation space
  • new LED and / or compact fluorescent lighting is much more energy efficient and glass enclosures have been replaced with safer plastic lenses
  • the climate control and water systems have been updated
  • new heat tracing of water systems is a more reliable way (that will also reduce maintenance costs) to avoid pipe freezing

Though the above list is not comprehensive, what we can say, in short, is that every original component of the car has been reassessed in an effort to increase passenger comfort, reduce energy consumption and improve safety on board.

 “Many of the improvements made to this dining car will be apparent to customers - but even those that are invisible to the eye will help make their travel experience safer and more enjoyable,” explains Roberto Pellizzari, Senior Manager, Rolling Stock Configuration and Mechanical Engineering.

If you’d prefer a more visual overview of the HEP upgrades, check out some before and after shots of the Diner cars, in our HEP image gallery.

In our third and final article of the HEP Family series we’ll cover the upgrades to the Park Car and a new pilot project will be revealed! As for the refurbished Skyline cars (also in the HEP family), information about the work done to those cars can be found in our article, “The Skyline Shines” and its accompanying image gallery.

These improvements were made possible through the Government of Canada’s Economic Action Plan. To read more articles about VIA’s Transformation, please visit our main page.

*To learn more about the menu challenge event VIA held this year, which helped develop the new menu being served on The Canadian, click hereto learn more about the menu challenge event VIA held this year.